Tuesday, 26 January 2016

IdTGV from Nice to Paris

Trying to skip hop faster than ever since I needed to get to Paris to catch a Ryanair budget flight to Manchester I decided to break a poor man’s backpacker rule and take a bullet train to Paris from Nice. Ryanair ticket from Paris to Manchester was only Euro 48.95 all tax inclusive + luggage fees but the bullet train ticket could easily double that amount. 

The thing about Europe is that if you book in advance … ADVANCE like not backpacker friendly advance, then train tickets COULD be really cheap. The bullet train I was thinking of boarding was on a French TGV line and after hours of keying in CHEAP, BUDGET, FREE, BEST, DIRT CHEAP, and any other keywords that comes to mind on Google, I stumble upon IdTGV the alternative website that sells cheap TGV line tickets.
I dun pretend to understand the system trust me and till today I am still baffled for it was technically the same train. Book under Seat 21 or some other TGV rail website or rail Europe blab la and the price sky rockets, but book under IdTGV website and the price was reasonably ok …. Still not dirt cheap but at Euro 69.90 I figured it was a good as any price to experience a bullet train at 325km/hr.

There was a problem thou trying to book IdTGV …. They only accepts online booking and they only accepts European credit cards. *KNNCCB …. (curse in Malaysian/Singapore style)* … Don’t give up hope I told myself and looked for that email under contact list where I send in a request by email pretending I had no idea a foreign credit card cannot work …  I keyed in my credit card number (without the security code nor the expiry dates) into the email telling them I was using so and so credit card from Singapore.
Within two days I got a reply, they told me that foreign credit card was not accepted but they have keyed in their database to exempt my credit card for this purchase since I have notified they by email. Try again they said. So I did and Hooray I got the ticket book and the journey was set.

The journey from Nice to Paris on the high speed train was an experience in itself I guess. 5 hours but really it only took 3 hours. The other 2 hours was getting the train from Nice to the starting point of Aviagon before the Train could shoot at full speed non stop.
In a way the train ride was not really comfortable. Seats were first class, clean, all amenities available and perfectly in order but if you have never been on a high speed train then you probably would not experience the air pressure constantly changing as the train go up hill and downhill. That was really not good for me for although it felt smooth the air pressure differential cause me to have a headache. Looking out the window was also a bad idea for it was too fast and everything was a blur. If you have a little motion sickness like I do …. brace yourself …

Arrive in Paris on time and out the train station. Dirty city of love I would call Paris ….
Gare De Lyon Train Station - Paris

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